World Leprosy Day today

Staff Reporter

Visakhapatnam: Last Sunday in January is observed as the World Leprosy Day by WHO to create more awareness among the people towards leprosy, to eradicate the disease and to support the leprosy patients.

The prevalence rate in India was 57 out of a 10,000 population in 1981 and it dropped to 0.74 by March 2008, according to WHO.

The number of patients had come down from four million to 87,000.

WHO set the defining rate as less than one in 10,000 to declare that a State has completely eliminated leprosy and 29 States and Union Territories achieved the same while four States and two Union territories are yet to meet the mark.

Elimination of leprosy in India was difficult issue but by creating more awareness among the people the task could be achieved, according to city dermatologist K. Venkata Chalam.

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